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Any good experiences with ACDF



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  • I had level 1 done on Aug 19(C5-C6) and I feel great. Don't get me wrong the first 2 weeks after surgery where hard on me with my muscles waking up and all. When I think back on it now I am so glad I did the surgery. I am not dropping things any more which is good and I no longer have muscle spasms on my left side. I felt like I was having a heart attack. My voice came back in about a week, my family and friends in enjoyed that because I talk a lot. I like you was very afraid of the surgery and I received a lot of good advice on this site. I did change jobs, because I worked in a factory and it was hard on a healthy body let alone my broken body. I now have a job in retail which is so much easier. The only thing I can not do is paint a master piece on a ceiling because I can not bend my neck back like that. I guess I will be no Michele Angelo. Take it easy going back to work, you do not want to go back to soon. I did not even have to stay over night in the hospital which was great for me, I get better rest at home. Just keep your ice packs and meds close by for the first couple weeks. I slept in the recliner for about 2 weeks, it was easier for me to get in and out off. Good Luck
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  • Just had level one C5-C6 surgery on November 13th. Overall, my post surgery issues never occurred. I left the hospital pain free (no meds post op and no meds at home), could climb stairs and take reasonable walks without limitation. I've slept primarily in my recliner in relative comfort. My doctor wants me to use my soft collar if I'm walking around and can take it off when sitting still. I'm amazed! The only discomfort I encountered was soreness in my throat. Not surprising since the surgeon moves a lot of stuff to get to the vertebrae.

    There are plenty of success stories on this forum and I too got preoccupied with negatives about the surgery. Of course the final evaluation of the surgery rests with fusion; however, so far so good.

    I wish you the very best on your surgery in January...that sure is a long time to wait. Take care and seek comfort in knowing others have had positive results after surgery. <:P
  • I had an ACDF C 5/6 in January. The pain I had in the arms and hands are gone. I still take muscle relaxers and sometimes a percocet for pain and stiffness I still get in the trap muscle in between my shoulders. There was also a small complication where I have some nerve damage from the surgery, and I am on pain medicine for that. I do not regret having this surgery, and I would absolutely do it again!
  • I'm three weeks post op - C5-C7. This surgery is the best thing I could have done after 8 years of issues! I'm so pleased with the results. I still have a little residual pain, but it comes and goes. I understand it can take a while to return to "normal".

    Do everything your doc says, don't rush the healing process.
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  • I had my surgery done the 1st week of July & I am glad I did. I had ACDF c 6-7. Before surgery I had neck pain My left arm was weak & numb. I had 4 opinions from 4 different doctors before surgery. All said the same thing I must have surgery because my disc was protruding on my spinal cord. The pain after surgrey was not bad in my neck but the site on the iliac crest where they took bone from for my fusion is still bothering me when walking or sittihg in the same position for too long of a time. My left arm remains slightly weaker than my right arm but it does not affect what I can do with it at all.
  • I have several different levels that are herniated. Starting from C 3,4 to C 6,7. They are all on top of each other and my NS was studying the new technology from the pro-disc c and we decided to put 2 artificial disc in and then fuse the last two. If I had a choice between a fusion and an artificial disc I would choose the artificial disc hands down!!!!
    It was wonderful!!!
    They go in through the front of the neck which I was very leery. I have two incisions which I hope in time will fade. I am dealing now with spasms where the fusion is and in time I am hoping that they will die down. I have 3 disc’s taken care of now we are going to work on my lower lumbar and then thoracic!
    This has been a long road I have been suffering for two years now and I am finally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel……
  • I am having an ACDF on Dec. 8th and have been scared about it. Not so much the surgery, my fear is around the recovery. However, after reading all of the posts after Libby mentioned her fears, I am feeling much better. Because my symptoms have decreased somewhat, I often think I don't need to have it done, but I know that at any time, I can lose the use of my left hand again.

    I was just laid off from work, so I am not going to worry about going back to work for a while. Though it stinks that I was laid off before the holidays and right before my surgery, it will allow me to concentrate fully on my recovery.

    Thank you all for the posts! They helped me a lot and I hope they eased your fears too Libby.
  • All these posts have helped me so much it is great to know I am not alone in my fear. I am totally with you sweetrobs2 I have a few good days and I think well maybe I don't need the surgery. But that never lasts too long as the pain unfortunately does come back. I have been so busy with work and family stuff I have really not had a chance to think about the surgery. I have even planned a trip to Florida right after xmas and I will be back on the 5th of January and the surgery it the 13th!!

    So I will have some R&R before I am laid up!!

    Good luck on the 8th Sweetrobs2! Let us know how you make out. By the way how many levels are you having??
  • Hey Libby, I am 42 and had C 5-7 fused last february, my first surgery ever, after hideous back pain that started a few months before. Luckily (?) I didn't have time to be nervous, the damage was already so severe I didn't have much choice. But I am very glad I had the surgery, though I had no idea that I would take so long to fully recover. I started working again mostly at home in July, and only now do I really see my stamina coming back - the difference between lying down most of the day and getting going for a real work day (dressing, commuting, no naps, etc) was huge.

    So everyone is different, but I really didn't recognize what the recovery period would mean to me - life has just been exhausting me for months, and only now, eight months out, do I feel like I really have normal stamina to get through the day like a healthy person. Hoping over the next few months to get back into things I used to do - go out after work, run, play tennis, etc. For now, just lifting weights, walking the treadmill, and doing my stretches. One day at a time ... Good luck!
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